Cuisine: Italian

Tablecloths and napkins in Haberfield already. With its big windows and clean design, Il Locale is about as close as the new Little Italy gets to fine dining right now but it is where the local Italian bigwigs go to wheel and deal. The food goes from very good to so-so, but the service is pretty well always impeccable. It’s Haberfield, so you know the pizza $17–$22 will be good, but there’s more to this place than pizza. Squid-ink pasta with prawns, chilli and lobster oil $25 is a pretty classy dish, as is a special of woodfired barramundi with capers, tomatoes and olives $30. Not a huge range of desserts but creme brulee $13 is there for the sweet of tooth.

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Cuisine: Italian,Italian

Never fear, the beloved pizzas $22 have not disappeared with the change of hands here. They still come wood-fired, thin, unfussy and crisp around the edges, just the way new owner Peter Zuzza likes. The rest of the menu is mostly on the blackboard: an ever-changing selection of stuzzichini — appetiser-size plates of Italian morsels, all $16 — and a few pasta options. Tagliata of thinly sliced, just-seared veal with a flavoursome toupee of rocket, parmesan and truffle paste is ideally shared alongside prosciutto-wrapped figs stuffed with gorgonzola. You’ll need a macchiato after sampling several fine Italian wines by the glass, followed perhaps by ricotta-filled canolo embedded with tiny nuggets of orange peel and chocolate inside $11. Who said pizza was the be-all and end-all?

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